ndab Ah Yes, Medical School: Seeing Gross Shit

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

Seeing Gross Shit

I wish I had a better way to put that, but that's about the only way I can describe my first venture into the real medical community. As part of our Doctoring class, once a month we go to a preceptor who is a family practice doc and get to practice our skills (uh huh) on real unsuspecting patients. Lucky for me, I got to shlep out to a Kaiser way out in bumblefuck Yay bumblefuck! Yay traffic! Assholes.

Anyways, my preceptor is actually a really cool - he is of the "throw them in the fire" camp, and after shadowing him for one patient just started handing me charts and having me taking patient histories to present back to him. Most of it was relatively benign and I learned a lot the entire day, but it wasn't all like that or else I'd have nothing entertaining to say. About halfway through my day there, the doc hands me a chart that says "{unreadable words} inflammation" and, with an evil smile, says "Be sure to report back to me a description of what the nodule looks like." I'm assuming that somewhere in medical school they teach you how to read these people's handwriting, and that's how he was able to decipher some message about there being a nodule.

I saunter over to the patient's room and open the door, politely asking the person's permission to let me take a history of him (some people are averse to dealing with med students and don't want to have anything to do with them- what they don't realize is that 10 years from now I might actually be their doctor so it's better I learn now before I accidentally cause them severe pain later in a more serious case). He is a middle-aged guy (52 y.o. - and as an aside, turns out he's married to a girl in her low twenties...grrr baby ya!) who seems pretty affable. I talk to him about his problems and he says something about a fever and that he has pain in his...penis! And guess where that inflammation is? His penis! And guess what I got to look at? (after asking his permission - "Can I please look at your penis?" ...given that I'm heterosexual, I never thought I'd have to say that in my lifetime, but hey go nuts) His penis! And guess what had a disturbingly large red bulge growing on the side of his penis? His penis! And guess who worked out a bit to hard on the stationary bike, leading to severe chaffing? His penis! (OK not really, but you know what I mean). Note to self: Never work out ever again.

What I wanted to tell my preceptor was "HOLY SHIT HE'S GOT THIS RED THING GROWING ON THE SIDE OF HIS DICK! AHHHH THE HORROR AHHHH!", but somehow I managed to elicit a semi-logical presentation and the doc took over from there. Yay medical school!